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Association between Mobile Phone Using and DNA Damage of Epithelial Cells of the Oral Mucosa

Author(s): Ahmad M Khalil, Israa F Alemam, Khaled M Al-Qaoud

Exposure to high levels of radiofrequency radiation can potentially cause tissue damage characteristic of many diseases including cancer. This study explored relationship between use of mobile phone and DNA damage in oral mucosal cells. One hundred individuals completed a questionnaire were grouped according to frequency and duration of mobile usage. Comet and TUNEL assays were used to determine DNA damage and rate of apoptosis, respectively. Number of damaged cells in right cheek was significantly higher than in left cheek in right ear phone dominant users, but not in left ear dominant people. Years of phone use was not positively correlated to degree of DNA damage, however, damage increased with increased frequency of phone use. Apoptotic cells were highest in medium (30-60 min/day) phone users. Although no significant correlation was observed between degree of apoptosis and cumulative year of mobile phone use, phone use must be minimized to reduce health effects.

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